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Joseph F

What Type Of Sand? To Add To Clay.

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Joseph F    865

I am going to start wedging sand into some of my clay for some vase I plan on designing to sell to local places.

 

I did some Google searching but most places just said find 100% Silica sand. But I am not sure how accurate that is for electrical kilns.

 

I assume you just can't use any sand as I assume it could be ocean sand and have salt residual in it and be bad for elements?

 

Is there a brand that is trusted? Or what do I ask for? Any tips?

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JBaymore    1,432

A lot of sands are actually made up of weathered feldspar, granite, and the like.  Some contain weathered shells (as in calcium carbonate). 

 

Normal IS silica sand.  Coarsely weathered silica (flint/quartz).

 

At cone 9 range.... many sands that are NOT silica sand..... melt.  SOme with calcium carb tend to outgas...and casue "issues" or many sorts.  Calcium oxide (what calcium carb turns into... is a flux on silica.  SO a "melting agent".

 

The best answer is ............ test, test, test.

 

And remember that non ceramic sands are not tested for consistency for what you are doing with it.  So what is fine for other uses as far as variance goes....... may come back and bite you in the butt.

 

best,

 

.....................john

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Joseph F    865

Bite in butt is what I am worrying about. I might put this on the back burner then until I have more time to spend months testing.

 

Thanks for quick reply.

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Joseph F    865

I think I'm just going to take my bone dry trimmings and wedge them into my wet clay. Or take my trimmings in a bucket and wet them to a muddy grout type feeling and add it to my thrown forms. This will do for now until I can fool around with more sand.

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Mark C.    1,800

Laguna/Axner sells ceramic sand-I think its in 100# bags dirt cheap. I have a bag-not sure if I have opened it?I'll look .

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calcine the sand you plan to use and see what happens. 

Mix a little with your clay body and see what happens. 

 

I use sand-box sand from Lowes in cone 10 reduction as part of a clay-sand texture slip, and it does not induce significant melting of the clay.

 

LT

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JBaymore    1,432

 

 

I use sand-box sand from Lowes in cone 10 reduction as part of a clay-sand texture slip, and it does not induce significant melting of the clay.

 

With students doing testing over the years.... we've found that Lowes / Home Depot / Toys Are Us sand from different lots from the same stores is different in how it behaves.  And different parts of the country appear to be different also. 

 

best,

 

..................john

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curt    117

Where I am at silica sand in various (usually coarser) sizes can be purchased from industrial minerals suppliers, quarries, etc. designed and graded for use in construction, light manufacturing. They usually can supply a spec sheet listing oxide breakdown, impurities, etc..

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neilestrick    1,381

Don't over think this. Just get silica sand from your raw materials supplier, probably the same place you get your clay. It's cheap and it will work. You just need to decide what mesh to use. For throwing bodies I like 70 mesh. If you want something gritty you could go as large as 20 or 30 mesh.

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The main point is that you should select your sand source wisely just as you select your sources for clay and other ingredients.  Variations within a single bag is not very likely, but expect some differences from today's bag compared to the one bought two years ago.  Test the sand to see if it meets your requirements, if it meets them OK, then use it.   

 

The sand I use I expect to surprise me, that is why I add it as surface decoration.   The same with local clay and dirt deposits.  I expect the next bucket to be different from last years bucket.   

 

LT

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I use white silica sand from local home improvement stores (Lowes, Home Depot, Menards).  It is sold near the cement, but I think it is also used a filter in some water treatments.  It runs about $5 for 50 pound bags.  I add a few pounds of sand and a few pounds of fireclay to every pugmill load (~35 pounds) of cone 6 clay to reduce warping.  Has made a big difference. 

The silica sand is usually a 20-50 mesh size.  I used the same sand in the mortar mix for a wood-fire kiln.  Playground sand would make me a little worried since it can vary a lot more.

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Joseph F    865

I am just going to have to try it. I am wanting to make the surfaces of taller vases more natural in appearance.

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perkolator    54

I started getting silica sand from my local Industrial Mineral supplier to replace expensive grog in my kiln wadding -- turns out it's the exact same 100# bag of sand that is sold in my local Home Depot in the masonry section.  

It is NOT "playground sand" it is 100% Silica Sand

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Joseph F    865

I am going to check out Home Depot soon. I am trying all sorts of things to vary my surfaces in electric firings. 

 

Thanks for all the help. 100% silica sand at home depot sounds right up my ally.

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alabama    144

There was in the 18th century up north a type of crock called coarse-ware and it was wheel throw with sand in it. Any sand that is the same size is probably what you're looking for. A couple of weeks ago I bought some "course sand" from the local sand and gravel company..its mixed with the larger particles a little larger than rice! Its for hand building! Do more experiments and let us know the results!!! :)

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JBaymore    1,432

Not finding "silica sand" here in Lowes/ Home Depot in the New England area.

 

best,

 

..............john

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Joseph F    865

I will report back if I find some. I will also report back my findings. I haven't checked Home Depot yet. I have just been enjoying myself throwing as tall as I can then cutting it in half. I kept a few nice things. I can only keep a pot around 18'' tall because that is as big as my kiln will allow once it shrinks it will fit! 

 

Really enjoying the process of throwing tall. Can't wait to add sand into the mix for some beautiful texture.

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I am not sure if I can post a link or not, but I will try.  It might be easier to find as "industrial quartz".  Here is the silica sand I find on Home depot's web site.  The stuff I have bought is the same, but in 75 pound bags.  Menards has the same thing in a 20-50 mesh size in a 50 pound bag.

 

http://www.homedepot.com/p/100-lb-Silica-Sand-520-100-4095/202080636

 

https://www.menards.com/main/building-materials/concrete-cement-masonry/bagged-concrete-cement-mortar/handy-sand/p-1444446377319-c-5648.htm?tid=-7072525121588110161

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JBaymore    1,432

When I go to that Home Depot link I get a warning "shipping is unavailable for this item" and also "Item is unavailable in store".

 

best,

 

.....................john

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oldlady    1,323

in other words, "we don't got none".

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There has to be something similar in your area.  I think it's main use is in some kind of water filtration application.  Maybe my area is unique in using some strange water filtration method.  I have seen it though the local clay suppliers (Missouri) but it is more expensive.  For example, through the KC pottery supply place I use it is $17 for a 50# bag compared to $5 from Menards. 

I just looked on a NH Home depot page and it does say not available. I wonder if you asked directly if they could bring some in.  I am curious what the main use of this sand is, and why it is only regionally available.  All the home stores around here (HD, lowes, and menards) have some version of it on hand in large quantities all the time.

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Joseph F    865

So I finally broke down and just bought some sand. It was apparently washed and sieved. However it still has rocks in it, so I am not sure what kinda washing they did. I use a small cooking sieve to get only the fine parts of the sand and I don't use the bigger chunks and rocks.

 

I made a few test vases with a lot of surface scarring. I also bought some course grog and I wedged that into the clay as well. I actually love the feeling of throwing the clay with sand or grog. It is odd to buy a porcelain and then wedge sand and grog into it.  :rolleyes:

 

I love how beautiful the sand is in the clay. I will post results after the firing.

post-63346-0-27103500-1494003561_thumb.jpg

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Joseph,

 

Agreed. 

 

Having some 'grit' in porcelain does create interesting surface textures -- both visually and tactilely.  Try using some local sandy clay, especially yellow and orange clay. 

 

I like using clay from our ponds as an exterior slip to cups and bowls and glazing only the interior surface or wedging it into white clay - like porcelain - to add some excitement to an otherwise boring surfaces. 

 

Lots of ways to modify a bag of clay to make it your own.

 

LT

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